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War Stories

The First Canadian Army in the Second World War:

Link to Prelude to D-Day    

First Canadian Army — Background on how the Canadian Army stumbled early out of the gate, fought to define itself, and ended up as the third partner, with the British and the Americans, landing in France on D-Day.

Link to Dieppe Intro  

Dieppe — On 19th August 1942, disaster befell the Canadian 2nd Division in their first action of WW2. MLU takes a look at the losses of the Calgary Tank Regiment, and offers some terrific rare colour photos showing the liberation memorial service in the Dieppe cemetery.

Link to D-Day  

D-Day & Normandy — On 6th June 1944, the Canadian Army was shoulder to shoulder with British & American Armies invading Nazi-occupied France. Canadian 3rd Division & 2nd Armoured Brigade landed on a 7km stretch of beach named Juno.

Link to Sydney Radley-Walters  

Sydney Radley-Walters — He landed on D-Day as a 2IC lieutenant in a C Squadron tank. He returned to Canada as commanding officer of his armoured regiment with a chest full of medals for his fighting skills. Meet Canada's top tank ace.

Link to VE Day  

Victory in Europe — The Nazis were defeated and the exhausted Canadian soldiers could see the end. But the occupying Germans were still fighting and the occupied Dutch were still suffering and starving in April/May 1945.


The Canadian Corps in the Great War:

Link to Vimy Ridge    

Dawn of the Tank 1916 — On September 15th, 1916, two divisions of the Canadian Corps debuted in an offensive role along with a new weapon of war, called "the tank" at the Battle of Courcelette. The battle would change the conduct of military tactics in the 20th Century.

Link to Vimy Ridge    

Vimy Ridge 1917 — The young nation had only taken possession of its 8th & 9th provinces (Alberta & Saskatchewan) in 1905. Yet only 12 years later, citizens from Canada's 9 provinces were in line on Vimy Ridge, France, doing what the British & French hadn't.

Link to John Babcock - Canada's Last WWI Veteran  

John Babcock — With solemnity we marked the death of an entire generation of Canadians when Jack Babcock, Canada's last Great War veteran, died in February 2010 while Canada was owning the podium at the Vancouver Winter Olympics.


Newfoundland in the Great War:

Link to Newfoundland Memorial Day    

July 1st Memorial Day — In the Great War, Newfoundland sent a soon-to-be famous regiment to join the British Army. It also became infamous for its heavy losses on the first day of the Battle of the Somme. Read how July 1st became Memorial Day in the island nation.


A Part of Your Heritage:

Link to Victoria Day    

Victoria Day (May Two-Four) — By the time of Canada's confederation of four provinces in 1867, Victoria had already been ruling the British Empire for 30 years — not even halfway through her rule. Read about Canada's favourite long weekend!

Link to the Diamond Jubilee    

Diamond Jubilee — 60 years on the throne as reigning monarch is no easy feat. No wonder is causes such a commotion around the Commonwealth realm. Take a look at Canada's Queen and her big parade. And a Canadian PM who makes the trip to congratulate her.

Link to Dominion Day    

Dominion Day (July 1st aka Canada Day) — Yes, America has Independence Day! France has Bastille Day! And for 115 years — through two World Wars, the Korean conflict, and our early United Nations peacekeeping missions — Canada had Dominion Day.

Link to Olympic Gold in London 1908    

Olympic Gold London (in 1908) — 1908 was a year of firsts for Canada. It was the first Olympics since Canada had become a nation from sea to sea in 1905 with the addition of Alberta & Saskatchewan. And it was the first time we put together a Team Canada under the maple leaf!



Next ...

The Canadian 3rd Division & 2nd Armoured Brigade in Normandy.


C Squadron of Sherbrooke Fusilier Regiment with a captured German Panzer

June 1944 — C Squadron of Sherbrooke Fusilier Regiment with a captured German Panzer Mk IV, north of Caen. Note German truck with SS plate. (Photographer: James Gethyn Jones, Maple Leaf Up collection)

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